Researching the stories that made, and continue to make, Texas has been the hallmark of the Institute of Texan Cultures since the beginning. These studies form the basis of long-term, short-term, and traveling exhibitions, as well as educational resource material and popular publications.
Research takes many forms, from analyzing historical accounts to studying material remains of the past to reveal new perspectives. Along with giving life to history, our research often provides a voice for those who have not traditionally been heard, as we assemble unique exhibits focused on our Texan heritage.
For more than a quart of a century, ITC researchers have been collecting, transcribing, and sharing first-hand accounts of the lives of Texans. The extensive Oral History collection includes over 900 personal remembrances of life and events that have built our state. These stories bring personal perspective to our exhibitions and classroom presentations. Most of the collection is available as audio and text files through the UTSA Library Archives Special Collections
located the Institute of Texan Cultures.
Documenting South Texas Folkartists
Through a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Institute of Texan Cultures recently undertook fieldwork in South Texas to locate artisans, craftspeople, musicians, performers and other individuals who carry on traditional folk ways. The study generated a series of oral history interviews, as well as identified new participants to share their folk crafts with the public at the annual Texas Folklife Festival. Several of the folkartists are also participating in exhibitions at the ITC, as well as contributing to Electronic Learning Expeditions and educator workshops.
Through collaboration with The University of Texas at San Antonio and other academic institutions, the Institute of Texan Cultures creates partnerships with scholars in pursuit of topics relevant to the Texan identity and perception of culture. This further enhances the academic mission of the Institute of Texan Cultures and enriches student experiences, as informed opinions and unique perspectives are presented for critical thinking and analysis.
Visiting scholars Dr. Jill Hernandez and Dr. Alistair Welchman, from the UTSA Department of Philosophy and Classics, co-chaired a discussion on the ethical situations arising from living in the Texas/Mexico border region. A panel comprising representatives the faith community, law enforcement, academia, media, and other aspects of the community shared their perspectives on current immigration issues.
For more information on ITC Research efforts: